Babylonian Talmud

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arrow To find a tractate in the 74-volume set of the Babylonian Talmud located in the Reference collection, use The Babylonian Talmud: Alphabetical Tractate Index library guide.

Talmud Abbreviations

The guide lists the order and abbreviations of the tractates so that you can more easily locate the volume that you need on the shelf.


  • About
  • Indexes
  • Find a Topic
  • Tractate Chart/ Abbreviations
  • Writing the Citation

Babylonian Talmud - About

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“The Hebrew word Talmud means study or learning. The Babylonian Talmud is a collection of study teachings based upon the Hebrew Bible and oral commentaries of Jewish learning. The six major divisions of the Talmud are derived from the Mishnah or oral Torah. The Gemara section of the Talmud explains the Mishnah. The Talmud incorporates teachings from the Jewish sages who lived from the second Temple period until the time of the Amoraim in the fifth century. Most of the Rabbis cited in the Talmud lived from 20 450 A.D.”

-- Dr. Brad Young

The Babylonian Talmud is shelved in the Reference collection, LRC-4th floor, call number BM500.E57 LRC-R.

The Talmud has six divisions. In the call number, each division is identified by a Section number. For example, the call number for the First Division, Seder Zera’im, includes "Sec. 1". Click the Tractate Chart/Abbreviations tab above for a defined listing of the tractates (books).

  • Seder Zera’im - First Division (look for "Sec. 1" in the call number)
  • Seder Mo’ed - Second Division (look for "Sec. 2" in the call number)
  • Seder Nashim - Third Division (look for "Sec. 3" in the call number)
  • Seder Nezikin - Fourth Division (look for "Sec. 4" in the call number)
  • Seder Kodashim - Fifth Division (look for "Sec. 5" in the call number)
  • Seder Tohoroth - Sixth Division (look for "Sec. 6" in the call number)

For more information see "Talmud, Babylonian." (Encyclopaedia Judaica ORU database - If you are off campus and have another Internet provider (includes Distance Learners) you will need to login.)

The Babylonian Talmud (translated by Michael L. Rodkinson)
Provided by Internet Sacred Text Archive.

Talmud - Indexes

Use and index to locate information in the Talmud for a topic, term, scripture reference, or rabbinical reference..

Within the print volumes of the Babylonian Talmud, indexes are found in two places: 1) at the end of the entire set as a cumulative index and 2) often at the end of each tractate as an index for the individual tractate.

  • Cumulative Indexes

    Called the “Keys to the Talmud,” the cumulative indexes are are in two volumes located at the end of the entire set. Use them to find subjects, scriptures, and rabbinical references within the various tractates of the Talmud.

    Vol. I — Includes the “General Index” and several abbreviation lists.
    Vol. II — Contains the “Index of Scriptural References,” “Rabbinical Index,” “Glossary,” and  “Transliteration of Hebrew Letters.”
  • Individual Tractate Indexes

    Each tractate contains its own glossary, abbreviations, and indices for scriptural references, general terms, and Rabbis. The tractate index is found at the end of each tractate, located in the middle of the volume between the English and Hebrew.

    Note: When tractates make up two and three volumes, the "tractate" index will be found in the last volume of that tractate. For example, the tractate index for "Baba Bathra," which is three volumes, is in Vol. III of Baba Bathra.

WebShas: Alphabetical Index of Topics
Designed as a topical index to the Talmud.
Talmud - Find a Topic

Follow the steps below to locate your topic in the Talmud.

  1. Get the cumulative index books, which are the last two volumes of the Babylonian Talmud set, call #BM500.E57 LRC-R.
Example term:
  1. Choose an index (general, Scriptural References, Rabbinical, etc.). A good place to start is with the "General Index," found in Keys to the Talmud, Vol. I.
Go to the General Index, p. 333. to look up "purple."
  1. Look up your term, and then record the tractate name(s) and page number(s).
The entry is: Purple,   Yeb. 14,  San. 52.
blue, BB. 292f, 295
  1. Locate the tractate on the shelf.
    Use the Alphabetical Abbreviation Index to identify the tractate abbreviations, and then the tractate chart to identify its position within the 64-volume set. (Click the Tractate Chart tab above.)
Yeb. 14 = Yebamoth, p. 14
San. 52 = Sanhedrin, p. 52
BB. 292f, 295 = Baba Bathra, p. 292f and 295
Baba Bathra is the 3rd tractate in the 4th Division so on the shelf, look for "Sec. 4, Pt. 3" in the call #.
  1. Find the page. Numbering at the top outer corner is the folio and side identification; numbering at the bottom center is standard pagination. The latter is used to find references from the index, while the former is used for the citation. If a tractate has more than one volume the pagination will be continuous from one volume to the next.
Baba Bathra is in three volumes. Look for 292 (vol. 2), which is the standard pagination.
--73b-74a. is the Folio and side number.
Talmud - Tractate Chart/ Abbreviations

The chart below is arranged according to tractates (books) as they appear on the shelf. Use it to identify abbreviations* then locate the tractates on the shelf.

Divisions 1
Abbreviations 2
Tractate 3
Subject Matter

First Division


Ber. BERAKOTH Benedictions
Pe'ah PEAH (Zeraim, Vol. I) Gleanings
Dem. DEMAI (Zeraim, Vol. I) Produce not certainly tithed
Kil. KILAYIM (Zeraim, Vol. I) Diverse Kinds
Sheb. SHEBIITH (Zeraim, Vol. I) The Seventh Year
Ter. TERUMOTH (Zeraim, Vol. II) Heave-offerings
Ma'as. MAASEROTH (Zeraim, Vol. II) Tithes
Ma'as S. or M.Sh. MAASER SHENI (Zeraim, Vol. II) Second Tithe
Hall. or Hal. HALLAH (Zeraim, Vol. II) Dough-offering
'Orl. or 'Or. ORLAH (Zeraim, Vol. II) The Fruit of Young Trees
Bik. BIKKURIM (Zeraim, Vol. II) First-fruits

Second Division


Shab. SHABBATH (Vol. I, II, III) The Sabbath
Erub. ERUBIN (Vol. I, II, III) The Fusion of Sabbath limits
Pes. PESAHIM (Vol. I, II) Feast of Passover
Shek. SHEKALIM (with Megillah) The Shekel Dues
Yom. YOMA (Vol. I, II) The Day of Atonement
Suk. SUKKAH The Feast of Tabernacles
Betz. or Bez. BETZAH Festival Days
R. Sh. or R. H. ROSH HA-SHANNAH Feast of the New Year
Ta', or Ta'an, or Taan. TAANITH Days of Fasting
Meg. MEGILLAH The Scroll of Esther
M. Kat. or M. K. MOED KATAN Mid-Festival Days
Hag. HAGIGAH The Festal Offering

Third Division


Yeb. YEBAMOTH (Vol. I, II, III) Sisters-in-law
Ket. or Keth. KETHUBOTH (Vol. I, II, III) Marriage Deeds
Ned. or Neda. NEDARIM Vows
Naz. NAZIR The Nazarite-vow
Sot. SOTAH The Suspected Adulteress
Gitt. or Git. GITTIN (Vol. I, II) Bills of Divorce
Kidd. or Kid. KIDDUSHUIN (Vol. I, II) Betrothals

Fourth Division


B.K. BABA KAMMA (Vol. I, II) The First Gate
B.M. BABA MEZIA (Vol. I, II) The Middle Gate
B.B. BABA BATHRA (Vol. I, II, III) The Last Gate
Sanh. SANHEDRIN (Vol. I, II) The Sanhedrin
Makk. or Mak. MAKKOTH Stripes
Shebu. SHEBUOTH Oaths
Eduy. or Ed. EDUYOTH Testimonies
'A.Z. or A. Zar. 'ABODAH ZARA (Vol. I, II) Idolatry
Ab. ABOTH The Fathers
Hor. HORAYOTH Instructions

Fifth Division

Hallowed Things

Zeb. ZEBAHIM (Vol. I, II) Animal offerings
Men. MENAHOTH (Vol. I, II) Meal offerings
Hull. or 'ul. HULLIN (Vol. I, II) Animals killed for food
Bekh. or Bek. BEKOROTH Firstlings
Arak. or 'Ar. ARAKIN Vows of valuation
Tem. TEMURAH The Substituted Offering
Ker. KERITHOTH Extirpation
Meil. or Me'il. ME'ILAH Sacrilege
Tam. TAMID The Daily Whole offering
Midd. or Mid. MIDDOTH Measurements
Kinn. or Kin. KINNIM The Bird offering

Sixth Division


Kel. KELIM (Tohoroth, Vol. I) Vessels
Ohol. OHOLOTH (Tohoroth, Vol. I) Tents
Neg. NEGA'IM (Tohoroth, Vol. I) Leprosy signs
Par. PARAH (Tohoroth, Vol. II) The Red Heifer
Toh. TOHOROTH (Tohoroth, Vol. II) Cleannesses
Mikw. or Mik. MIKWAOTH (Tohoroth, Vol. II) Immersion-pools
Nid. or Nidd. NIDDAH The Menstruant
Maksh. or Maks. MAKSHIRIN (Tohoroth, Vol. II) Predisposers
Zab. ZABIM (Tohoroth, Vol. II) They that suffer a flux
Teb. Y. or T. Y. TEBUL YOM (Tohoroth, Vol. II) He that immersed himself that day
Yad. YADAYIM (Tohoroth, Vol. II) Hands
Utkz., 'Uk., or 'Ukz. 'UKZIN (Tohoroth, Vol. II) Stalks
Nidd. or Nid. NIDDAH The Menstruant

Cumulative Indexes
Sec. 7

Keys to the Talmud, Vol. I-General Index
Keys to the Talmud, Vol. II-Scriptural References, Rabbinical Index

* Some abbreviations are taken from The Mishnah: Translated from the Hebrew with Introduction and Brief Explanatory Notes by Herbert Danby, Oxford University Press.

1 To locate a division on the shelf, look for a corresponding section number (Sec.) in the call number.

2 There are variants in the abbreviations.

3 Each tractate is identified on the call number as a part ("Pt."). Shorter tractates may be combined in a volume; longer tractates may have more than one volume

Talmud - How to Write the Citation

Citations for Talmud entries are unique and follow the general rules below. For example, the citation b. B. B. 73b-74a is for Baba Bathra, page 292 of the Babylonian Talmud.

Use the folio and side a or b numbering (upper outside corners).
Numbering for tractate pages is not taken from the standard pagination at the bottom, such as page 292. (Click the Find a Topic tab above to see how to find the sample entry used in these examples.)

When citing page 292 use 73b-74a.

Use abbreviations for the tractate names.
See The Babylonian Talmud: Alphabetical Tractate Index (pdf) for abbreviations.

When citing "Baba Bathra" use B. B.

To distinguish versions of the Talmudic tractates use abbreviations: y. for Jerusalem and b. for Babylonian.

When citing Babylonian Talmud (b), use b.


Note: This guide is provided to assist you. Always follow your professor's requirements and the appropriate print style manual guidelines when writing citation.

Related guides:
Theology Research
Theological/ Biblical Word Studies
Theological Reference Materials
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